I had great plans for tonight. I was going to make ricotta-stuffed tomatoes, but the tomatoes we got in our CSA box, although beautiful, weren’t really suited for that. We needed some good, big heirloom or beefsteak-type tomatoes, and these were smaller and juicier. We also had an excess of chard, so we decided to make chard-tomato pasta instead. Other than boiling the pasta, we did the whole thing on the grill, with me serving as sous-chef and Pat manning his domain. The result was lovely with a bottle of Rancho Sisquoc Sauvignon Blanc, enjoyed al fresco on a beautiful summer evening while Nora was snoozing. That’s a helluva Friday night these days!
Chard-Tomato Peasant Pasta
Adapted from this recipe
1 bunch chard (red, rainbow, swiss, erbette… whatever you’ve got), cleaned and roughly chopped (cut stems into smaller pieces)
2-3 Tbs olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
4-5 medium ripe tomatoes
12 oz. (one package) fresh whole wheat fettucine
splash of white wine and/or squeeze of lemon
Roast the tomatoes on the grill, turning with tongs, until the skin starts to bubble. Alternatively, you can roast them under the broiler (or just chop them and add them with the chard, if you’re in a hurry).
Heat the olive oil over medium high heat and saute the garlic in a large saute pan for 1 minute until softening a little, making sure it doesn’t burn. Add chard and cook until wilted, 5-7 minutes. Add chopped roasted tomatoes and cook for a couple more minutes. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a pot of salted water until it’s 1-2 minutes from being done.
Add the pasta to the pan with the chard and tomato mixture, along with a bit of the pasta water, and cook until done, another minute or two, stirring. Add a splash of white wine and/or a squeeze of lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with grated parmesan.